I was at Borders a few nights ago and I picked up 'Warhammer 40,000: The Killing Ground', 'The Art of Clint Langley: Dark Visions from the grim Worlds of Warhammer', 'The Army of Flanders and the Spanish Road: 1567-1659' by Geoffrey Parker, 'Forgotten Wars: The End of Britain's Asian Empire' by Christopher Bayly and Tim Harper and 'The grand Strategy of Philip II' by Geoffrey Parker.

I finished 'The Lover' by Marguerite Duras a few days back. I have just started on 'Battles of the Thirty Years War: From White Mountain to Nordlingen 1618-1635'. I am also in the midst of a few other books including 'God is not great: How religion poisons the world' by Christopher Hitchens.

What you are guys reading?

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Read: "Verses for the Dead" by Preston & Child. A Pendergast Novel. Pendergast is an FBI agent that solves most difficult cases all by himself. Now he has to take on a partner. Miami has a serial killer problem; hearts of women are being cut out and put on the tombs of other women that committed suicide a decade ago. As Agent Pendergast and his partner try to figure things out, they realize there is a conspiracy that goes back decades. Very good and Recommended.

"The Yuezhi: Origin, Migration and the Conquest of Northern Bactria" by Craig Benjamin. The Yuezhi were probably an Indo-European people that migrated eastwards to present day China about 1000-2000B.C.. Centuries later in a war with the Xiongnu(Hun-Nu), the first great nomadic empire that threaten Early China, they were forced to migrate westward were they ended up in Northern Bactria(Afghanistan) in 130B.C. They would go on to conquer all of Afghanistan, Pakistan, and parts of NW India. The new empire they founded was the Kushan Empire. This was very important for world history. They linked the Roman Empire and the Parthian Empire to Han China. This allowed trade and ideas to pass between these Lands. The book only covers the Yuezhi's early history as the title states. The author promises a sequel to cover the later history of the Yuezhi. Dry at times, but Good and Recommended. 

Reading The Westphalian Army of the Napoleonic Wars. A massive volume - 528 pages - it's pretty much everything a wargamer  would want to know.

Read: "The Chinaman" by Stephen Leather. A novel of revenge. A Vietnamese refugee, with U.K citizenship, living in London, running a Chinese Take-Away restaurant, has his only remaining family, wife and a daughter, murdered by an IRA bomb. He tries to receive justice by going to the media, his MP, and MI5. All to no avail. As a one time member of the NVA and U.S. Special Forces; he finds out the identity of a big boss in the Sinn Fein. He proceeds to terrorize the terrorist and his family. There are many trails to follow with even the IRA not trusting each other. Very Good and Recommended.

"Prime Directive: An Epic Novel of the Rise of Alexander the Great" by Alexander Geiger. This is Book one in the Ptolemaios Saga. Actually this book is also a SF novel. A time traveler from 2400 years in the future has come back to observe the Festival of Dionysus in Ancient Macedonia. He has set up a blind in a tree that will overlook the festival. He also has a plan B in case something untoward happens. He has a local identity, Ptolemaios of Lagos. Only women can be in attendance in this festival.  Two boys pop up to spy on the ladies and are attacked viciously. One gets away and our time traveler, on impulse, saves the other whose name is Cleitus. He awaits the extraction team to come for him but something is wrong, no one comes. He finally realizes he is stranded.  Later he is captured by Phillip II, king of Macedon, who likes his style and sends him to the school of his son, Alexander and friends. He is worried that he might have violated the Prime Directive and may never get home. Outstanding and Most Highly Recommended.

"Flood Tide: An Epic Novel of the Greek Invasion of Persia( The Ptolemaios Saga Book 2)" by Alexander Geiger. The journeys of a time traveler in Alexander the Great's army. Alex was supposed to be killed at the Battle of Granicus but was saved by Clietus who should of been dead for years. Now history has been changed. With Alex's death, the Greco-Macedonian army was destroyed. The Persians went on to conquer Greece and Macedon then the rest of Europe and North Africa and their empire lasted a 1000 years.  Ptolemaios has violated the Prime Directive. Maybe it can be reset so he can go home, 2400 years in the future. This book 2 ends with Alex and his army victorious at Issos. Ptolemaios knows of a "Natural Time Portal" in the Nile delta but it will not open for years.

"The Conquest of Persia:An Epic Novel of the Triumph of Alexander the Great( The Ptolemaios Saga Book 3) by Alexander Geiger. Ptolemaios has picked up an enemy, Alex's Seer and fortune teller. He sees in Ptolemaios a competitor because of his knowledge of Greek History. The Seer's equal knowledge of Greek History makes Ptolemaios suspicious this Seer is more than what he seems. Alex goes on to his great victory at Gaugamela. Book 3 ends at the sack of Persepolis and Darios III on the run. Outstanding books and Highly Recommended. Book 4, etc, is not out yet. The author intends to cover Ptolemaios life even beyond Alex's. Waiting....

Read: "Before & After Alexander: The Legend and Legacy of Alexander the Great" by Richard A. Billows. This book, as the title states, is about the "Before",  Phillip II, Alex's father and the founding of the Macedonian Nation and after Alex's death, his successors. Mostly very good except the author has a "hang up" about Alexander. He thinks Alex was a "nothing". Only what came before and after is worthy of interest. Well, I disagree, Alexander the Great is the greatest of the Great Captains of history. The author is dead wrong on this point. Otherwise the book is pretty good and Recommended.

"Ten Myths of Modern Academia, Vol. 3 The Crusades: Ten Common Myths found in College Texts and Lectures Explored and Exploded" by Mark Hodges. The title says it all but I would of  changed the word "myths" to "Lies". Outstanding and a must read. Only about 75 pages and each chapter is a debunking of one myth(lie) about the Crusades. Most of this I already new but nice to have it all in one book.


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